Studio How-To brings handmade to the holidays

Inside Studio How-To.

Studio How-To owner Sarah Nemecek hopes to help people enjoy the holiday season even more by offering special gift-making classes. In her studio at 2140 Lee Road, Nemecek provides instruction on how to make things for friends and family, both for the pleasure of gift giving and for the experience of learning and socializing with others while creating.

Nemecek’s goal is to remove the stigma of the handmade gift, replacing the weird-colored, ill-fitting handmade sweater with cool, modern, useful handmade gifts that anyone would be thrilled to receive, proud to give, and capable of making.

For the past several years, Nemecek has been making and exchanging handmade gifts, activities and tools with her family and friends.

“The spirit of giving got lost with all the stress of crowds and shopping. We started questioning why we were giving presents that no one needed or wanted,” said Nemecek. She got her whole family and several friends involved, and now their focus is on finding new ways to impress and delight one another with handmade items.

Nemecek teaches handcraft and art workshops at Studio How-To year-round, but will focus on skills and projects for gift-making during November and December.

Her approach is to teach students the skills to get started and send them home with a completed project, along with enough knowledge to repeat the process, customize, troubleshoot and expand.

Studio How-To offers classes for both adults and kids, primarily on weekends and evenings. For the holidays, Nemecek will offer parent and child combination classes. “My son loves taking classes with my husband or me, and it can be a lot of fun and great bonding for parents and kids to learn together,” Nemecek explained.

Nemecek also hosts private workshops and parties for groups that want to tackle something new and fun together. “Picture getting a group of friends together to learn how to knit or sew a basic project, and then making several for everyone on your list,” suggested Nemecek.

Studio How-To recently added a small gallery space, SH2 Gallery, which exhibits works for sale by local Cleveland artists whoalso teach or lecture at the studio. Studio How-To also has partnered with ARTneo: The Museum of Northeast Ohio Art to display pieces from its permanent collection at SH2 Gallery and combine themes from the collection with special classes.

For the holidays, the gallery will exhibit ARTneo’s collection of holiday cards, made by Cleveland artists from the past several decades, and Nemecek is planning one or more holiday card-making workshops. 

For those who like the idea of handmade, but not making something themselves, Nemecek offers gift certificates for classes.

For more information, visit

Sruti Basu

Sruti Basu is the director of community-building programs at FutureHeights.

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Volume 10, Issue 11, Posted 9:56 AM, 11.02.2017